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New to this site - morning back stiffness #87678
05/04/06 11:49 PM
05/04/06 11:49 PM
Joined: May 2006
Posts: 2
Salt Lake City, Utah
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Ironwoman Offline OP
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Ironwoman  Offline OP
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Joined: May 2006
Posts: 2
Salt Lake City, Utah
Hello. I'm very new to this site...just happened upon it from googling "a.m. back stiffness." I have been suffering with low back pain now for 2 years and have degenerative disks (L3,4,5) and arthritis. I haven't been able to find any site specific to what I'm experiencing - which is mainly morning stiffness out of bed - some days I have to "roll out" onto the floor and slowly work my way to a standing position I'm so stiff. Once I get moving around, shower and do some stretches the stiffness dissipates. I'm very active - I do long distance triathlons, ski and trail run. I refuse to give up. I have been to a massage therapist and he tells me my back muscles aren't the culprit; so it must just be the spine. Wondered if any one else experienced a similar scenerio and had any advice? Thanks! and as Winston Churchill says (there's a billboard on my street with his picture that has this quote: NEVER, NEVER, NEVER GIVE UP.) As athletes, it's very difficult to back down!!

Re: New to this site - morning back stiffness #87679
05/08/06 08:59 PM
05/08/06 08:59 PM
Joined: Oct 2005
Posts: 127
Idaho
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McFuzz Offline
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McFuzz  Offline
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Joined: Oct 2005
Posts: 127
Idaho
Dear Ironwoman,

Welcome to the site, sorry you are having back troubles. Your symptoms sound pretty similar to mine before I was diagnosed. Your morning routine sounds very familiar. It takes awhile before I can unfold when I get out of bed. I too am a distance runner and do alot of snowshoeing, rock climbing, mountaineering. (In fact we were just in SLC this last weekend and ran some and climbed in Little Cottonwood) We love SLC!

Anyway, have you seen a Rheumatologist? If not, that would be my first suggestion. It took quite awhile before I got my official diagnosis of AS. I am very fortunate that my Rheumy is also a runner and an advocate for staying active with arthritis. He says as long as I can do it, then go for it! The only time of day that I do not have pain is while I am running/working out. That is why I never give up either! I refuse! You are right, as athletes it is hard to give up.

I don't know if I answered your questions. I hope this helps, if you have any other questions, please write. It is frustrating until you know what the problem is. Good luck with your workouts!

Lynette

Re: New to this site - morning back stiffness #87680
05/08/06 09:15 PM
05/08/06 09:15 PM
Joined: May 2006
Posts: 2
Salt Lake City, Utah
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Ironwoman Offline OP
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Ironwoman  Offline OP
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Joined: May 2006
Posts: 2
Salt Lake City, Utah
Thanks for the response! Yes, SLC is wonderful for hiking, climbing and running...but, please keep it a secret! I haven't seen a rhumatologist. I guess I figured if it's DDD I'm just going to have to live with it. My massage therapist said I'm doing an "experiment of one!" Which makes sense. I'm just experimenting around to see what works and what doesn't. The weird thing last week was I biked on Saturday, then did a trail run on Sunday and had a hell of a time moving on MOnday a.m. - hard to turn over in bed. Saw Mark (massage therapist) on Wed and he said everything felt fine; but I was so stiff getting off his table and couldn't bend over to put my pants back on! When I went to pay him I said, "See, this is how it is in the a.m. and you just finished working on me and said my back wasn't stiff." So, I didn't work out at all Wed, Thur or Fri. and Sat woke up without any stiffness. So, I guess I should be a slug?! No way. So, I biked on Sat and did another run on Sunday and this morning I was a little tight! Who know!!!! This is soo confusing to me!

Re: New to this site - morning back stiffness #87681
05/12/06 06:44 PM
05/12/06 06:44 PM
Joined: Oct 2005
Posts: 127
Idaho
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McFuzz Offline
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McFuzz  Offline
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Joined: Oct 2005
Posts: 127
Idaho
Yes, I agree - we need to keep the greatness of SLC a secret!!

The stiffness is always there for me - sorry to tell you that. I used to mountain bike alot and had to quit - I experimented with all sorts of heights for my seat and bars, etc., but it just became too painful and not worth it to ride. Everyone is different though.

I have found now that with my running I have to run about 3 miles before I am warmed up enough to stretch-then I stop (which I hate to do but it makes the rest of the run so much better) anyway, I stop and do a variety of stretches -esp. for lower back and then finish. If I do too many downhill runs my low back gets really stiff. I just try to make sure that I stretch several times a day wherever I am. Keeping my hamstrings stretched really seems to help.

I do ice my lower back or heating pad whichever feels best.

How is your fatigue level? Do you struggle with that? That is a big one with me and this disease.

My massage therapist is my best friend. She really gets in there and breaks things up.

I am kind of doing the same thing I guess - the experimenting. I just go to my Rheumy to get meds for the bad days and then I do whatever I want. Shame on me. I pay for it alot but it's worth it.

Thanks for the reply - I hope I am helping with your questions - sometimes just talking to others who are athletes helps so thanks!

feel free to ask questions or whatever.

Good luck, Lynette


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